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VALUE: Valid Assessment of Learning in Undergraduate Education

Lifelong Learning VALUE Rubric

The VALUE rubrics were developed by teams of faculty experts representing colleges and universities across the United States through a process that examined many existing campus rubrics and related documents for each learning outcome and incorporated additional feedback from faculty. The rubrics articulate fundamental criteria for each learning outcome, with performance descriptors demonstrating progressively more sophisticated levels of attainment. The rubrics are intended for institutional-level use in evaluating and discussing student learning, not for grading. The core expectations articulated in all 16 of the VALUE rubrics can and should be translated into the language of individual campuses, disciplines, and even courses. The utility of the VALUE rubrics is to position learning at all undergraduate levels within a basic framework of expectations such that evidence of learning can by shared nationally through a common dialog and understanding of student success.

The Lifelong Learning VALUE Rubric is available at no cost via AAC&U's Shopping Cart (link below):

You may wish to download all 16 VALUE rubrics in one file that is available to you at no cost via AAC&U's Shopping Cart (link below):


Lifelong learning is “all purposeful learning activity, undertaken on an ongoing basis with the aim of improving knowledge, skills and competence”. An endeavor of higher education is to prepare students to be this type of learner by developing specific dispositions and skills described in this rubric while in school. (From The European Commission. 2000. Commission staff working paper: A memorandum on lifelong learning. Retrieved September 3, 2003)

Framing Language

This rubric is designed to assess the skills and dispositions involved in lifelong learning, which are curiosity, transfer, independence, initiative, and reflection. Assignments that encourage students to reflect on how they incorporated their lifelong learning skills into their work samples or collections of work by applying above skills and dispositions will provide the means for assessing those criteria. Work samples or collections of work tell what is known or can be done by students, while reflections tell what students think or feel or perceive. Reflection provides the evaluator with a much better understanding of who students are because through reflection students share how they feel about or make sense of their learning experiences. Reflection allows analysis and interpretation of the work samples or collections of work for the reader. Reflection also allows exploration of alternatives, the consideration of future plans, and provides evidence related to students' growth and development. Perhaps the best fit for this rubric are those assignments that prompt the integration of experience beyond the classroom.

Acceptable Use and Reprint Permissions

Individuals are welcome to reproduce the VALUE rubrics for use in the classroom, on educational web sites, and in campus intra-institutional publications. Please be sure to credit AAC&U using the following permission statement: "Reprinted [or Excerpted] with permission from Assessing Outcomes and Improving Achievement: Tips and tools for Using Rubrics, edited by Terrel L. Rhodes. Copyright 2010 by the Association of American Colleges and Universities.”  A permission fee will be assessed for requests to reprint the rubrics in course packets or in other copyrighted print or electronic publications intended for sale. Please see for more details on AAC&U’s permission policies and information about how to request permission.

VALUE Rubrics can also be used in commercial databases, software, or assessment products, but prior permission from AAC&U is required.  For all uses of rubrics for commercial purposes, each rubric must be maintained in its entirety and without changes.  The following permission statement must also be used for all approved commercial uses: "Reprinted [or Excerpted] with permission from Assessing Outcomes and Improving Achievement: Tips and tools for Using Rubrics, edited by Terrel L. Rhodes. Copyright 2010 by the Association of American Colleges and Universities.” To request permission to incorporate AAC&U VALUE Rubrics into a commercial product, contact Alexis Krivian at: